I did NOT see that coming!
This has been on my TBR pile for a while, but I finally got around to reading it while on holiday.
It's big, it's twisty, it will surprise you ... and unlike many books in the Contemporary romance genre, it did not have a predictable ending.
It took me a while to get my head around the timeline hopping, and changing POVs ... BUT that is part of this book's charm and part of the hook.
Julie's writing style is excellent. As a writer myself, I know I'm reading something good when I stop analysing the text or sentence structure and just focus on the story, which I did easily.
The story starts in Maine with Robbie and Emily, the two main characters, in later life and already you're wondering how they ended up together and ended up in Maine. I've never been to Maine, or know anything about sailing - which features heavily in the story, but found there was enough detail to enlighten and entertain me without trying to 'educate' me.
There were so many unanswered questions and breadcrumbs laid out throughout the story that I just had to keep going. When things started to fall into place in the final segment, I felt an impending warmth and certainty that we would finally reach a HEA, but this was totally spun on its axis at the final twist which I absolutely did not see coming.
Julie's writing style is excellent (which you would expect, having been selected by the Richard and Judy book club.) Her characters are vibrant, and appear very real and she writes a secure sense of place. Her choice of vocabulary and dialogue are very believable.
My only criticism is that there were parts of the over-arching plot that I felt weren't resolved sufficiently. Namely, Robbie's adult relationship with William, and the reflection of the circumstances and scandal of Adam's birth (which at one point I had thought was going to be the main focus of the story rather than a side-plot.) Fix these and it would have been a definite five stars from me.
Having said all of that. If you like a solid romance with all the emotion and only a hint of what goes on behind closed doors (so you can feel confident you can recommend this to your Granny), with a story that twists and turns and one that promises to surprise you - then I highly recommend Together by Julie Cohen.